Whatever reasons Moslems may have had to be angry with Western governments in September 2001, in 2007 those reasons were multiplied and intensified. The most fundamental reason is the sudden global crisis in the cost of grain, which has put the core of human diet out-of-reach of much of the world’s population, indicating a basic breakdown of the West’s pet project of globalization. On top of this non-negotiable need for food came Israel’s barbaric economic war against the population of Gaza, the dramatic rise in the frequency of U.S. missile strikes on Moslem countries with which the U.S. was not at war, and the final pulverization of already stateless Somali society by a U.S.-backed Ethiopian army. Following the deepening Moslem-Western confrontation of the last seven years, the events of 2007 make highly probable an intensified level of Moslem resentment and resistance over the next seven years.
How must the world appear to a struggling parent in the developing world, if that is the right word for societies that are being pushed from “developing” to “falling further behind” by a combination of rising energy prices, exploding food prices, and constant Western military pressure? What judgment is an educated Pakistani, Egyptian, or Indonesian to make about the morality of a West-dominated international political system that denies even the freedom to eat? Extremists with a ready answer are eager to point the finger of blame. What justification can the West, which has spent a trillion dollars fighting an unnecessary war in Iraq, make in response?
It is hard to imagine a clearer indictment of globalization or a better recruiting tool for al Qua’ida than grocery stores filled with food that no one can afford to buy.